Ongoing Projects

The Infant & Toddler Development Project, under the guidance of Dr. Jeffrey Lockman, is currently conducting several research projects with respect to how children play with objects and how they manipulate their movement as they gain control of their arms and hands.

  • How children first learn about the their own body.
    In this study, soft, small vibrating buzzers are placed on various locations on the infants' body. The subsequent movements of the infants are analyzed regarding their ability to locate the buzzers. We are interested in exploring how children first learn how the human body is configured and when they are able to locate various parts of their body.

  • How infants and toddlers develop control and manipulation of movement.
    In this study, infants and toddlers are given different simple tasks such as hammering a peg. Their motions are recorded using simple reflective markers and infrared cameras. Different tasks are given to different age groups and the development of controlling arm movement is studied.
  • How infants develop hand-to-mouth coordination during the first year.
    In this set of studies, infants are placed in a chair and presented with objects such as pacifiers, bottles, spoons, and sippy cups. As they bring objects to their mouths, their movements are recorded and analyzed to gain knowledge of how the basic adaptive skill of self-feeding develops.

  • How children develop early writing skills.
    In this study, children in pre-school, kindergarten, and first grade are given writing tasks. They wear an eye tracker to tell us where they are looking during these tasks. This information allows us to examine the link between visual processing and motor control.